One of the most compelling novels of the twentieth century, Beloved by Toni Morrison has been read in classrooms across the country since its publication in 1987. The novel follows Sethe's escape to freedom, the murder of her child, and her difficult psychological journey as she copes with her past as a slave. As both an historical account of the experiences of slavery and an insightful novel about a supernatural ghost, this text is ideal for upper level high school students and students in AP programs.
Set in the Dominican Republic during the rule of Rafael Trujillo, In the Time of the Butterflies fictionalizes historical figures in order to dramatize the Dominican people’s heroic efforts to overthrow this dictator’s brutal regime. In the following activities, students will examine the actions of the characters in the novel and discuss an all encompassing definition for courage.
This lesson plan is the seventh in the “Incredible Bridges: Poets Creating Community” series. It provides a video recording of the poet, Elizabeth Alexander, reading the poem “Praise Song for the Day” composed for President Barak Obama’s 2009 inauguration ceremony. The companion lesson contains a sequence of activities for use with secondary students before, during, and after reading to help them enter and experience the poem.
This lesson plan is the fourth in the “Incredible Bridges: Poets Creating Community” series. It provides a video of the poet, Edward Hirsch, offering a little backstory, then reading the poem “Cotton Candy.” The companion lesson contains a sequence of activities for use with secondary students before, during, and after reading to help them enter and experience the poem.
This lesson plan is the third in the “Incredible Bridges: Poets Creating Community” series. It provides a video of the United States Poet Laureate, Juan Felipe Herrera, reading the poem “Every Day We Get More Illegal” and a companion lesson with a sequence of activities for use with secondary students before, during, and after reading to help them enter and experience the poem.
Lesson 2 is a study of symbols in William Golding’s novel "Lord of the Flies." After reviewing the general concept of symbolism, students focus on four of the most dominant symbols that permeate the novel: the island itself; the conch; the Lord of the Flies effigy; fire.
This lesson focuses on character analysis throughout William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies. While contemplating both direct and indirect characterization techniques, students will be able to consider how characterization builds relationships among the boys in the novel.
In 1845, the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, and Written by Himself was published. In it, Douglass criticizes directly—often with withering irony—those who defend slavery and those who prefer a romanticized version of it.
The corrupting influence of slavery on marriage and the family is a predominant theme in Solomon Northup’s narrative Twelve Years a Slave. In this lesson, students are asked to identify and analyze narrative passages that provide evidence for how slavery undermined and perverted these social institutions. Northup collaborated with a white ghostwriter, David Wilson. Students will read the preface and identify and analyze statements Wilson makes to prove the narrative is true.
Through close readings of Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, students will analyze how Hurston creates a unique literary voice by combining folklore, folk language, and traditional literary techniques. Students will examine the role that folk groups play in both their own lives and in the novel.